Sacred Texts  Judaism  Index  Previous  Next 
Buy this Book at

Eighteen Treatises from the Mishna, by D. A. Sola and M. J. Raphall, [1843], at


§ 1. On the day of atonement, it is forbidden to eat and to drink, to wash, to anoint, 2 to lace on [leather] shoes, and to indulge in sexual intercourse. A king and a bride [until the 30th day after her nuptials] may wash their faces; and a lying-in woman may lace [put] on [leather] shoes. Such is the dictum of Rabbi Eleazar: but the sages prohibit it.

§ 2. Whosoever eats food to the size of a large date, that is, the date with the kernel, or drinks a mouthful, is guilty. All kinds of

p. 127

food are alike computed by the size of the date, 3 and all liquids by the mouthful; but food and beverage are not to be joined in the computation. 3

§ 3. If on one occasion [through oblivion], man has eaten and drank, he needs bring but one sin-offering; if he has eaten and [also] done work, he must bring two [separate] sin-offerings; if he has eaten food which is not edible [properly and usually adapted for human sustenance], or has drunk liquids which are not properly and usually adapted for beverage—as if, for instance, he leas drunk brine or fish-lie—he is absolved.

§ 4. Children need not be made to fast, but they are to be [gradually] habituated thereto, a year or two [before they are by law bound to fast], so that they become fluent [ready and accustomed] in obeying the commandments. 4

§ 5. If a pregnant woman, through the smell of food, longs for some on the Yom Kipur, she is to be fed until she recovers [is satisfied]. A sick person is to be fed by direction of expert [physicians]; but if there be no expert physicians, he is to be fed at his own desire, until the himself says [I have] enough.

§ 6. If a man is seized with bulimy, 5 he is to be fed 6 even with unclean food, until his eyes become clear [bright]. A person who is bitten by a mad dog, on the Yom Kipur, must not have any of the dogs [reticule of the liver] given him to eat; 7 but R. Mathias ben Harash permits it. Moreover, R. Mathias ben Harash said, "If a person has a sore throat, it is permitted to put drugs [medicines] into his mouth on the Sabbath, because the disease may endanger his life, and whatsoever threatens to endanger life supersedes [the observance of] the Sabbath."

§ 7. If a building tumble down, and it is doubtful if any person be buried beneath the ruins or not; if it is doubtful whether he be dead or alive, or whether it be a heathen or an Israelite, it is permitted to remove the ruins from above him on the Sabbath; if he be found alive, the ruins are to be entirely removed [so as to extricate him]; but should he be dead, he is to be left [till afterwards].

p. 128

§ 8. The sin-offering, and trespass-offering for sins done wittingly, atone [for sin]. The Yom Kipur and death, make atonement through [sincere] penitence; penitence makes atonement for slight transgressions against positive or negative commandments; in grave transgressions, it obtains a respite 8 until Yom Kipur completes the atonement.

§ 9. He who says, "I will sin, and then repent, I will sin [again], and then do penance," is not permitted [from on high] to become penitent; [for him who thinks] "I will sin; the Yom Kipur will atone for my transgression," Yom Kipur does not make any atonement. A transgression which a man has been guilty of towards his God, Yom Kipur will atone for; but a transgression a man has been guilty of towards his neighbour, Yom Kipur cannot atone for, until he has appeased his neighbour. For thus R. Eleazar ben Azariah expounds the text, "'From all your sins before the Lord shall ye be clean:' 9 those transgressions of which man has been guilty towards his God, Yom Kipur atones for; but for those transgressions of which man has been guilty towards his neighbour, Yom Kipur cannot atone, until he has appeased his neighbour." R. Akivah saith, "Happy are ye, O Israel, before whom do ye cleanse yourselves, and who cleanses you [of your transgressions]? Your father who is in heaven. For it is said, 'Then will I sprinkle clean water upon you, and ye shall be clean;' 10 and it is also said, 'the ‏מקוה‎ 11 of Israel is the Lord;' even as a diving-bath purifies the unclean, so does the Holy One, blessed be He, cleanse Israel." 12


126:2 It was usual, in the days of the Mishna, to anoint the body and beard with scented oils and perfumes.

127:3 Vide Treatise Sabbath. The food and the beverage are not to be joined, so as to be computed together as the quantity, the eating of which renders a man guilty.

127:4 The legal age at which a boy is required to fast, and to perform all other religious duties, is from thirteen years upwards.

127:5 ‏בולמוס‎, βουλιμια a diseased ravenous appetite.

127:6 This rule holds good on the Yom Kipur, or at any other time.

127:7 It is considered not as a certain cure, but as a sympathetic remedy.

128:8 The doom is suspended.

128:9 Lev. xvi. 30.

128:10 Ezek. xxxvi. 25.

128:11 A bath of running water, into which a person who has contracted any uncleanness descends and dives, and becomes clean again.

128:12 Jer. xiv. 8.

Next: Introduction